It’s National Sleep Awareness Week (March 10 through 16, 2019), which highlights the importance of good sleep health. There are number of factors that contribute to insomnia for veterans including traumas associated with employment, irregular work hours, and the difficulties surrounding the transition back into civilian life. With that in mind, post-9/11 veterans and families are learning how to improve the quality and quantity of their sleep with the help of Cohen Veterans Network (CVN).
Centered on therapy and counseling options that are the current, best practices based on research, CVN offers Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) among its core treatments. CBT-I is a short-term, goal-orientated treatment focused on issues related to sleep.
Currently considered the most effective non-drug treatment for chronic insomnia, CBT-I has been shown to improve sleep in seventy-five percent to eighty percent of individuals with insomnia. It works by identifying and changing thoughts and behaviors that prevent restful, quality sleep. Treatment is individualized, with clinicians incorporating different techniques such as the use of a sleep diary (recording sleep patterns), stimulus control therapy (associating the bed with sleep) and sleep restriction therapy (limiting the amount of time spent in bed to develop a more stable sleep schedule).
CBT-I is just one way Cohen Veterans Network is providing support to the veteran community. The network is also filling the gaps in care with high-quality, accessible and integrated mental health care.
“Our mission is to improve the quality of life for veterans and military families. To do so, we actively seek to understand the specific needs of the veteran population we serve,” said CVN President & CEO Dr. Anthony Hassan. “One such need is around insomnia. CBT-I allows us to tackle sleep-related challenges head on. Ultimately, we are helping our clients develop healthy sleep habits, an essential component to leading a happy life and getting back to better.”
CBT-I is available at each of the 11 Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinics at low to no-cost. The treatment is typically six to eight weekly sessions.
In addition to sleep-related problems, Cohen Clinics treat a variety of mental health issues including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, adjustment issues, anger, grief and loss, family issues, transition challenges, relationship problems, and children’s behavioral problems.